On February 7, 2022, two Native American tribes filed a federal lawsuit against North Dakota’s Secretary of State challenging the state’s enacted legislative redistricting plan as diluting their reservations’ voters’ voting strength in violation of Section 2 of the federal Voting Rights Act (“VRA”). They sought a judicial declaration the plan violated the VRA, a preliminary and permanent injunction barring the plan from use in future elections, and an order requiring the State to adopt a new, lawful plan by a certain deadline and, if they fail to, for the court to do so.

  • On March 28, 2023, a group of non-party state legislators filed an interlocutory appeal and filed a request for a writ of mandamus with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in response to the district court’s ruling that legislative privilege did not shield them from discovery. The Eighth Circuit dismissed the interlocutory appeal for lack of jurisdiction on April 3, 2023, denied the request for mandamus on June 6, 2023, and denied a request for rehearing en banc on September 6, 2023.
  • The district court held a four-day bench trial starting June 12, 2023.
  • On November 17, 2023, the district court struck down the state’s legislative plan as violating Section 2 of the VRA and gave the State until December 22, 2023, to adopt a remedial plan and submit it to the court for review.
  • On December 12, 2023, the district court denied the State’s request to stay its remedial order. On December 17, 2023, the State requested the Eighth Circuit to extend its remedial plan deadline which was denied on December 20, 2023. The State filed a similar motion with the district court on December 21, 2023.
  • On January 8, 2024, the district court denied the extension request and ordered the adoption of plaintiffs’ proposed plan 2 as a remedial plan.

Similar Case: Walen v. Burgum


U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota, Eastern Division - No. 3:22-cv-22

United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit - No. 23-1597

Supreme Court of the United States - 23A476

United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit - No. 23-3697 & No. 24-1171

United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit - No. 23-1600 (In Re: North Dakota Legislative Assembly, et al)

Supreme Court of the United States - No. 23-847